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Heavy duty telescope recorded an unusual signal from space

05 August 2018

This allowed the scientists to assume that the signal source with the code name "FRB 180725A" was extremely powerful.

They are burst of radio emissions that last milliseconds and have been first discovered about ten years ago.

According to a statement released in The Astronomer's Telegram (a bulletin board of astronomical observations posted by accredited scientists), the mystery signal - named FRB 180725A after the year, month and day it was detected - transmitted in frequencies as low as 580 megahertz, almost 200 MHz lower than any other FRBs ever detected.

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Located in British Columbia CHIME radio telescope (Canadian Hydrogen Intensity Mapping Experiment) is looking for signals passing through the vacuum of space.

But FRB 180725A had a few more surprises in store. Most of the time, radio telescopes like this don't hear anything out of the ordinary, but every so often an unexplained signal finds its way through the noise, and that's exactly what happened on July 25th. Until now, no FRB below 700 MHz has been recorded.

"Additional FRBs have been found since FRB 180725A and some have flux at frequencies as low as 400 MHz". In a diagram measuring the radio frequency over time, there is a clear bright streak beginning below 600 MHz.

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"These events have occurred during both the day and night and their arrival times are not correlated with known on-site activities or other known sources of terrestrial RFI (radio frequency interference)".

Christopher Conselice, professor of astrophysics at Nottingham University, told Mail Online: "We don't know their origin, they could be caused by a number of things". FRBs detected by astronomers here on Earth come from incredibly long distances, located so far off in space that we can't even see what might be creating them. Beyond the visible spectrum, space is a colorful mess of radio signals and microwaves fired off by flaring "suns", collapsing stars, crackling magnetic fields, roiling dust clouds and seething black holes. FRBs aren't uncommon, but they are quite special in that their origins are completely unknown. Other possible origins include supernovas (exploding stars), supermassive black holes or various other sources of mighty electromagnetic radiation, such as pulsars.

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Heavy duty telescope recorded an unusual signal from space